Facebook in the foothills

In 2010, Facebook announced it would construct a new $450 million data center in Rutherford County, just outside Forest City. To help build relationships, launch new programs and tell its North Carolina story over the long term, the social media giant turned to GBW Strategies.

We coordinated a gala groundbreaking involving Facebook execs, state and local leaders and community members. There, Congressman Patrick McHenry famously took out his Blackberry and instructed everyone to get online and post that Facebook "likes" North Carolina.

As the data center has developed, GBW Strategies has worked to advance and update Facebook’s evolving story. This has included an acclaimed video tour as well as:

  • Proactive communications with media on everything from construction updates to the company’s pioneering Open Compute project

  • Getting to know state and local leaders

  • Maintaining a vibrant local data center Facebook page with more than 8,500 fans

  • Launching programs such as the Facebook-Rutherford Community Action Grants, an initiative in which local leaders advise Facebook on distributing $200,000 in funds for area nonprofits.